It’s Official! Facebook launching external ad network

About 2 and half years ago I wrote about how I thought Facebook was going to launch their own version of Google Adsense. The idea was that Facebook would create an external advertising network that leverages that vast amount of data Facebook collects on its users to serve targeted ads based on likes, interests, music, comments, etc.

Well, 2 and half years later and GigaOm has confirmed that Facebook will release an external advertising network.

It is going to be interesting to watch how Facebook rolls out this network. How will they minimize complaints about privacy? Will they start with close partners first (Zynga, Instagram, etc)? Will it only be for external websites that utilize the Facebook Graph API? What will the impact be on the company’s bottom line? Will this be the killer revenue model that justifies a $100 billion valuation for Facebook? Should Google be nervous?

It is going to be fun to watch how this plays out and evolves over time…